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Generation Theory is becoming obsolete: all of us are micro interest groups

Generation Theory is becoming obsolete: all of us are micro interest groups

People like to simplify things because they are worried about the world's complexity. In work, contact with friends and family and love relationships, concepts described in broad strokes are used. People may easily judge every phenomena in three different ways: "it's black," "it's white" and "I'm not very interested in it." Thus, everybody got it, companies, parents, teachers, marketers, psychologists, authorities and journalists, when the popular generation theory took shape. Why not? Why not? It's all basic and clear.

It was grasped, copied, and trusted. In fact, however, theory is more likely than to really represent the diversity of modern society to give people psychological ease while communicating between generations (including the economy). Verzhbitskaya Zlata

11 Feb, 2020

Depending on the building is not effective but psychologically convenient. Let's imagine a marketer has to find out how the branded sneakers can boost their sales by 50–100% of the average person's monthly wage. This specialist is a technician for reach. He decides that he must target people by their age, thus he must focus the sneakers ad just on the generations Y and Z and submit this decision to the firm. Everyone thinks it's all right because, well, it follows generations' theory.

However, generation X is actually going to buy the sneakers for generation Z. In Generation X people could also be delighted about the branded footwear. For instance, a group of 200,000 followered Facebook sneakers was born in 1981 (the canonical border of generations X and Y), 1978, 1977, 1975 and even 1971. All of these are Xers, buddies.

In this situation we omit an entire segment of consumers in the advertisement just because the theory has recommended that.

People are more harder than they appear to be

Let's take a closer look at one of Generation X representatives: a man who was born in 1975, interested in sneakers. Let's call Mr. X to him. He subscribed to a list of Facebook groups: the fashionable tattoos group (not actually a generation-X theme, right?); the Instagram group (remember that the man is 44 years old); the traffic arbitrage group; the two-click computer group that talks about overclocking RAM; Excel drummer machines and so forth; the anime community. Is that sufficient?


If not, we will provide you extra information as well: Mr X is also a subscriber to a range of eyelash and hair extension groups, a community dedicated to DJ equipment (what?), and an Ursula Le Guin fan club.

On the basis of this very odd set of hobbies, can we make this random Mr. X a believable consumer picture? A convincing one appears tough to construct.

Let's have another look, real this time, Mr. X. He is interested in music software for rappers 16 years old, popular scientific talks by Russian biologist Alexander Panchin (the major audience of which are Generation Y and Z) and Duran's comic books. He has watched the "teenage" TV series Sex Education and The End of the F***ing World with great interest and looks forward to looking at new episodes. How are you going to target adverts for him?

Let's see the other side of the matter. What are tens of thousands of Z generation doing in the fan communities of The Beatles? They don't even know how and why people all across the world once blowed their brains. Where did such a large crowd come from in groups dedicated to old junk of all types? History? Literature?

Something in generation theory doesn't stack up.

Marketing generation quickly becomes obsolete

A renowned business coach and marketer called Arkady Zuker (a first education philosopher) unexpectedly started discussing this in November 2019. As a person who has successfully trained on "Marketing Generations," he suddenly started to publicly query whether the theory of generations bluffed. For the Xers generation, Zucker says: "Perhaps the Y and Z generations are an enhanced version of us." He also pointed out that a commonplace fear of new generations may follow the appearance of generation theory. That suggests that the Xers generation was so terrified of Generation Y, realising that they were so far away from "Zs" that they immediately blinded the notion, simplified it all, pointing to "black" and "white." Then they paradoxically wondered, "How can we offer goods and services to those insane Z's generations?"


The solution to this question is undoubtedly the focus of interest on micro groupings. Generations Z and Y began in recent years to teach generation X to use internet technology, mobile applications, and so on. It's one family: the Z and their parents.

Along the way, Generation X started learning the current model of consuming. Now Russians have about 88 million smartphones, and 75% of the population use the internet. Mobile taxi aggregator apps have shown really rapid growth, millions of fellow AliExpress citizens of every age buy, non-cash payments are rising rapidly and social networks have gained wonderful coverage, and so on. Where is the so-called intergenerational gap?

How Microtargeting Made Trump President of Facebook

You have to ask science if you don't comprehend something. Scientists aren't too eager to examine micro-targeting. You want to cure cancer and go to Mars. However, if you search, some of them still devote their work to this subject.

Federica Libernini of the Swiss Higher Technical School Zurich and Ruben Cuevas from the University of Madrid, Charles III among others, have carried out studies which revealed that targeted Facebook ads climbed by 10% during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. This was not an average goods and services competition. It was a tremendous rumble where Republicans and Democrats spent billions.

Trump's team spent 44 million dollars on Facebook alone and Clinton's democratic team spent 28 million dollars on Facebook alone. So Trump managed to draw more people than Clinton to his side. Nobody knew how that happened, but Trump's crew proved to be good managers of SMM.

Trump Donald

The Republicans promoted 175,000 Facebook ads throughout the race. Scientists observed that if age or race was used, the advertising were useless. But if microtargeting was established on the basis of the viewers' supposed ideological viewpoints and education, they performed brilliantly.

The hilarious thing is the choice of Trump for individuals who routinely use Facebook, who utilise social networks as their major news source and who have a low level of education (populism has always worked for "ordinary" people).

An associate professor at Warwick University, Mikela Redoano, told the press, One of the authors of the study, "Social networks, such as Facebook, provide capabilities for targeting at an exceedingly fine level using predictive analytics. It is based on historical Internet user behaviour."

It turns out that the recipient's age is not the level of education and interests (in this case, ideological position).

What can a 60-year-old GRU colonel from Moscow, a 40-year-old programmer from Berlin, and an 18-year-old London singer playing indie folk in a garage, unite? Maybe they all enjoy playing chess, looking into the night sky through costly telescopes and the so-called electronic voice phenomenon.

The interests of the people are various. Their interpenetration between X, Y and Z generations, even if you don't delve too far, is noteworthy. What's that telling us?

Real opponents are reaching and targeting

The efficiency of advertising investments is supported by both companies and marketers. Maybe it's time for generations' hypothesis to retire? If you think about it, there is a great deal of generational coverage in advertising, which captures all fish on a net and competes for near-chirurgical efficacy.

The saturation and oversaturation of marketplaces for goods and services can be an indirect evidence that the micro-targeting is more effective. Consumers are swamped with mass items – cellphones and electronics, banking facilities, clothes, toilet paper, food supply or any other surprise won't surprise anyone. Simultaneously a wide variety of craft items has began to thrive: short-run board games, unusual residences, Instagram bakers, mobile specialised apps, and more.

The people of Russia are completely atomized. In their families, tiny social circles and interest groups, they have been isolated. In July, 2019, the PEF and the Levada Center revealed that Russians regard lonely older children, single mothers and disabled families as their best neighbours – that is, as quiet and invisible neighbours. In October 2019, a survey indicated that 76% of Russians are willing to work late merely to avoid seeing their neighbours in the lift. And similar data are also true for many other countries throughout the world.


It's unfortunate, but society is evolving. But because we enter the era of micro groups, it's worth focusing on artisan items and services. Content marketing (including video) and microtargeting in the integrated Internet promotion should be addressed in this respect. It is worth blasting a huge company operating on the mass market. However, other companies (typically medium-sized and small-scale companies) do not have to upgrade their budgets.

For example, you should not sell 200 G&L electrical guitars in Athens at a cost of more than $ 1300 each, but instead search for guitar-crazy micro-groups. These include bankers, caterers, journalists, students, programmers and even security officials. Yes, coverage like a nuclear bomb can be obtained in a metropolis, but it is expensive.

Like many Z and Xers generations, we are committed to conserving our money and to specialising as many Y's generations. We are all micro-societies. We are surrounded by flowering complexity and extremely detailed decline. Choose according to your temperament for yourself.

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